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Real Science: What it Is and What it Means

By: John Ziman

399 pages, no illustrations

Cambridge University Press

Paperback | Jul 2002 | #131562 | ISBN: 0521893100
Availability: Usually dispatched within 1-2 weeks Details
NHBS Price: £46.99 $62/€53 approx
Hardback | Apr 2000 | #106238 | ISBN: 052177229X
Availability: Usually dispatched within 6 days Details
NHBS Price: £91.99 $121/€105 approx

About this book

Aims to open the way to reconciliation in the `science wars' by describing how academic scientists actually undertake research and communicate their findings. It shows that the philosophy, pschology and sociology of science are inextricably entwined, and that `realism' and `relativism' are just two sides of the same coin.
`In sum this is an important book about the practice of science from someone who has been there....must be read by anyone who wants to understand modern science as it is practised.' The Times Higher Education Supplement

'! an excellent insight into the social and 'political' structure of the scientific world. Real Science makes interesting reading because it shows that scientific knowledge, rather than providing the idealized, clear and concise description of the world around us, is all too much an evolving product of the human mind.' Peter L. Hordijk and Eloise C. Anthony, Nature Cell Biology 'Any scientist interested in establishing a more constructive dialogue with the science and technology studies community would be well-advised to read these works.' Physics Today '! for anyone wanting a detailed, realistic, well-rounded view of science, Ziman's Real Science is your book.' David L. Hull, Nature '! a well-organised, carefully argued and very readable work.' Uwe Schimank, Research Policy 'Ziman presents such an impeccably-assembled analysis of what exactly science was, is, and is becoming, that reading it brings about that satisfying sense of a mental jigsaw falling into place.' Vanessa Spedding, Science and Public Affairs 'I would strongly recommend this book !'. Scientists for Global Responsibility


Preface; 1. A peculiar institution; 2. Basically, it's purely academic; 3. Academic science; 4. New modes of knowledge production; 5. Community and communication; 6. Universalism and unification; 7. Disinterestedness and objectivity; 8. Originality and novelty; 9. Scepticism and the growth of knowledge; 10. What then, can we believe?; Bibliography; Index.

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John Ziman is well known internationally for his many scholarly and popular books on condensed-matter physics and on science, technology and society. He was born in 1925, and was brought up in New Zealand. He took his DPhil at Oxford and lectured at Cambridge before becoming Professor of Theoretical Physics at Bristol in 1964. His research on the electrical properties of metals earned his election to the Royal Society in 1967. After voluntary early retirement from Bristol in 1982 he devoted himself to the systematic analysis and public exposition of various aspects of the social relations of science and technology, on which he is a recognised world authority. He was for many years chairman of the council for Science and Society, and between 1986 and 1991 he headed the Science Policy Support Group. He is currently Convenor of the Epistemology Group.

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